The unknown Amsterdam sculptor

Posted August 29th, 2012

Netherlands, Sculptures

The violin player in the Stopera. The man trying to catch the tram near the Marnixstraat. The little lumberjack. The fondled breast on the Oudekerksplein. The small, disappearing, reappearing bronze statue of a man lying on his back, in the same pose as Theo van Gogh was found after his murder.

Metafilter: “All bronze or iron statues found in Amsterdam which have one thing in common: nobody knows who made them.

All these statues were installed in the dead of night, often without official sanction and the person or persons responsible for them have never been publically identified. The Amsterdam city council, which has bought several of these statues, does know who the sculptor is, but has been sworn to secrecy, a condition the sculptor insisted on when selling these sculptures. According to the city council, the only thing they could reveal about him was that he was a retired medical professional who creates them as a hobby.

Many people who know of the statues however find that unlikely, as it’s not that easy to just put in a statue somewhere, even in Amsterdam and especially not in the professional manner with which they have been installed. This must have been a professional, talented sculptor, but also somebody with enough influence to get their statues installed for them by a city notoriously difficult to bend the rules for anybody, somebody whose true indentity is so sensitive they have no choice but to create these statues anonymously.

Which means there’s only one choice: it has to be the queen.”